Neil S. Siegel

Neil S. Siegel is Professor of Law and Political Science and Co-Director of the Program in Public Law at Duke Law School. He received his B.A. (Economics and Political Science), summa cum laude, in 1994 and his M.A. (Economics) in 1995 from Duke University. He graduated in 2001 with joint degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, receiving his J.D. (first in class) from Boalt Hall School of Law and a Ph.D. in Jurisprudence and Social Policy. Professor Siegel served as special counsel to then-Senator Joseph R. Biden during the confirmation hearings of John G. Roberts and Samuel A. Alito. During the October 2003 term, Professor Siegel clerked for Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg at the Supreme Court of the United States. He also served as a Bristow Fellow in the Office of the Solicitor General at the United States Department of Justice and as a law clerk to Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Professor Siegel teaches and researches in the areas of constitutional law, constitutional theory, and the economic analysis of constitutional law.

Columns by Neil S. Siegel

A Health Care Law That Everyone in Congress Can Agree Upon


Justia columnist and Cornell law professor Michael C. Dorf, and Justia guest columnist and Duke law and political science professor Neil S. Siegel comment on an interesting but less often discussed aspect of the controversial 2010 federal health care law. As Dorf and Siegel explain, before the Supreme Court reaches the merits of the case involving the health care law, it must first consider the federal Anti-Injunction Act, which became law in 1867. Dorf and Siegel note that the Anti-Injunction Act requires taxpayers who object to the federal government’s assessment or collection of a tax to first pay up, and only then sue for a refund. With respect to the federal health care law, Dorf and Siegel explain, that would delay even the very beginning of federal litigation until 2015. Yet both the law's fans and its detractors want a decision from the Supreme Court much earlier than that. Some would opt to simply ignore the Anti-Injunction Act, but as Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit commented, “There is no ‘early-bird special’ exception to the Anti-Injunction Act.” Fortunately, Dorf and Siegel offer an ingenious solution to this dilemma that combines a reasonable interpretation of the Anti-Injunction Act with the passage of a new federal stature.